27 Jun 2023 | Clubs & Facilities |
SA clubs canvas new options
by Golf Australia
By Patrick Taylor
Many golf clubs around the country offer places to stay, but visitors to Loxton and Bordertown in South Australia can experience a different kind of on-course accommodation.
Loxton Golf Club, to the north-west of Adelaide, began welcoming campers around 15 years ago giving members from sister clubs a place to stay for their annual tri-club competition.
With eight powered sites now available to the public, Loxton has become a very popular camping stop at only $25 a night.
Loxton president Terry Sawade says the club has been getting great feedback on its camping initiative.
“Campers like it just the way it is. It’s cheap and it has everything they need,” said Sawade.
“It brings in about $15,000-20,000 a year, which is a nice boost for our club”.
Campers at Loxton can enjoy the clubhouse locker room facilities and discounted green fees on the course.
Sawade says it’s an even split between golfers and non-golfers who stay at Loxton, but once they see the course, many of those not intending to play are converted.
“Some campers arrive and are disappointed they left their clubs at home, so we hire out sets and they have a hit,” he said
Now that it is set up, the campsites at Loxton essentially run themselves, and are a sustainable and profitable use of extra land on the property.
About 250km south of Loxton, Bordertown Golf Club has a similar initiative for travellers passing through.
President Lynton Mackenzie said, like Loxton, camping had provided a good financial boost for the club.
“Once we levelled it out and grassed it all, it’s been pretty much self-sufficient,” Mackenzie said.
“We usually have one or two sites full, four nights a week. We get busier over the school holidays.”
Bordertown is one of the many clubs around the country that have seen good participation and membership growth in the last few years.
With initiatives like three-month membership offers, and “sip and swing”, to compliment the camp sites, Bordertown is a great example of a club using innovation to drive growth.
Like Loxton, travellers opting to stay at Bordertown can enjoy powered sites and access to the clubroom facilities, with the added bonus of front-row views of the ninth and 18th greens.
Both Mackenzie and Sawade were pleased to report that their clubs see a lot of return traffic to the campsites.
“A lot of people leave thinking they’ve found a hidden gem, and can’t wait to tell their mates about it,” Mackenzie said.
A Loxton Life Member attempted to plan out a golf and camping trail, but COVID brought the project to a halt. With more clubs taking up the camping initiative, this is a possibility in the future.
Golf Australia General Manager, Clubs and Facilities Damien de Bohun said Loxton and Bordertown were two examples of clubs using their land in positive non-traditional ways.
“It’s great to see clubs across the country using their resources to drive positive impacts for themselves and their surrounding communities,” he said.
Find out more about the camping options below:
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